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24                                 SHIPPING PRACTICE

Should the goods have any defects, then the carrier will

classify the term "apparent good order" by including in

the margin of the bill such terms as "old case," "stained

case," "straw wrapped pieces only," or "unprotected."

The addition of any similar qualifying clause makes the

bill of lading "unclean," and, adversely, the expression

\" clean bill of lading" means any bill of lading which

1 has the clause "apparent good order and condition"


Shipping companies in their own interest insert these
clauses when necessary as a safeguard against unwarranted

There is a practice of issuing letters of indemnity against
clean bills of lading, which is adopted by a number of com-
panies. These letters of indemnity state that in consid-
eration of being given a clean bill of lading the holder
indemnifies the carrier against all risks and claims arising
from the defect. This, although practised, is legally wrong,
and the holder of a letter of indemnity in this case has no
right other than that of good faith.

The master of the steamer having signed for so many
cases in apparent good order and condition, when he knows
they are not so by being given a letter of indemnity to that
effect, issues a legal document in the form of the bill of
lading with a misstatement of fact upon it, which is nothing
less than a common fraud, and on these grounds numerous
cases fail because the owners are unable to seek the assist-
ance of the letter of indemnity. These letters of indemnity
are stamped with a 6d. stamp, but it does not make them
legal. A legal document is still legal although unstamped,
but the stamping of a document does not necessarily make
it legal.

The bill of lading is made out in the name of the shipper,
or, if an agent, as " A.B. as agents," and consigned to the
consignee or receiver. For many reasons some shippers are
not anxious that the name of the consignee shall become
known, and in this case the bill of lading is consigned to
"order" or "shipper's order/1